Discover more from Arts and Climate Change with Nicole Kelner
Less screen time, more creative time
Believe it or not, I used to hate social media.
In 2017 I wrote an article called 5 Ways to be Intentional about Your Internet Time and in 2019 I wrote about 10 Ways to be Mindful of Your Screen Time. I bought an Android phone to test an operating system designed to cut down screen time.
This was all before our phones even tracked our screen usage.
I think doing that research years ago allowed me to develop a healthy relationship with social media today. I try to focus on the power of social media for good and use it in a way that will benefit my mental health (rather than the other way around).
This week I’ve been tapping into some of those practices because as soon as I turn on my phone, the news overwhelms me with sadness and anxiety.
I thought I’d share some updated tools I’m using right now to use tech mindfully. With this extra mindfulness around my tech time, I’m also able to make more space for creative time as well.
I use the One Sec app to make it annoying to open social media. It’s an app that makes you wait a few extra seconds to access the app. It tells you to breathe in while waiting.
I switch my phone + computer to black and white at 10:30pm everyday. Here is how to do it on your phone and on your computer. These dramatic changes are a helpful cue to remind me to shut down my tech. Watching Netflix in black and white is much less exciting.
I choose which platforms I want to optimize my screen time on so I don’t overextend myself. I don’t use TikTok and I don’t make Reels on Instagram. Video is exhausting for me so I don’t push myself to do something that doesn’t feel authentic.
I have a second phone with only wifi and no social media apps. I place it next to my bed at night and charge my real phone across the room. On this old phone I play meditations right before bed rather than scroll myself to sleep. It also helps me not check socials in the middle of the night or right when I wake up.
I don’t post on the weekends. My intention is to share something Monday-Friday and take the weekends off. I sometimes like to write my newsletter on the weekend though (hi, hello!). I accept that social media is part of my daily routine and like to post in the morning to feel free the rest of the day.
I turn off autoplay on Netflix. Highly recommend this if you need help cutting down on TV time. Tutorial here.
I only see artsy accounts and real friends on Instagram. My little secret for this is that I mute a ton of people on Instagram (this means you are still following each other and can message but just don’t see their stories/posts). This allows me to feel connected with my closest friends and inspired by art when I open my account. Here is a tutorial.
I use the Fresh Air chrome extension to prompt me to take a few breaths when I open a new tab (just go to the settings and click start automatically).
I turn off notification badges and hide the apps I don’t want to use. I put these apps in a folder on the last page of my phone so I don’t look at them every time I open my phone.
See the good. Social media has allowed me to meet so many of you wonderful people reading this. I follow accounts that share climate solutions and learn something new each time I open my feeds.
These small changes add up. I’m able to start my day with my morning pages (journaling) and a little less anxiety. I’m able to go to sleep reading before bed and meditating. I watch a little less TV and make space for a little more art.
I hope a few of these tips can be helpful right now and I’m sending my love to you all.
This newsletter is made with lots of love. If you’d like to support more climate art, please consider becoming a free or paid subscriber 💖
Coloring Book Updates
I’ve been home the past few weeks and coloring with my mom. The photo on the left makes me so happy because we used almost the exact same colors for our solar panels. Great minds color alike 😅
My coloring book launch party is on Wednesday! There are only a few spots open if you still want to come. RSVP here.
My Climate 101 class is happening! I got a ton of positive feedback on this idea and I’ve already started working on the curriculum. Sign up here for updates.
Ways to support me:
I’m open for commissions. I help climate organizations simplify their messaging into pretty art
I host climate art workshops! I customize these workshops to your group- these are a great team-building activity.